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Joe Banner was named the Browns’ chief executive officer by owner Jimmy Haslam on October 16, 2012. He joined the team after spending the previous 19 years (1994–2012) with the Philadelphia Eagles, including the final 12 as the club’s president. Banner spent the first seven years of his tenure with the Eagles overseeing the day-to-day operations of the organization.
During Banner’s time with the Eagles, the team boasted a regular season record of 162-124-2, made the playoffs 11 times, won six NFC East titles, advanced to the NFC Championship Game on five occasions and made one Super Bowl appearance. From 2000–2009, the Eagles led the NFC with 103 regular season wins, becoming just the 13th team in NFL history to top the century mark in victories over the course of one decade. Stability was established during Banner’s tenure, as the team had just two head coaches since 1995.
The franchise was equally successful off the field under Banner’s leadership. He worked closely with the city of Philadelphia to ensure that the Eagles moved into their new home—Lincoln Financial Field—in 2003. The team not only has played in front of sellout crowds for every home game since the stadium opened, but also in its final four years at Veterans Stadium (1999–2002). In addition, the club constructed their new state-of-the-art practice facility—NovaCare Complex—in 2001. The Eagles also have consistently been among the top NFL teams in total revenues.
The Eagles were active members of the Philadelphia community during Banner’s time with the organization. Under his watch, the club formed the nationally acclaimed Eagles Youth Partnership and was instrumental in the Eagles Tackling Breast Cancer campaign.
Personally, Banner was also heavily immersed in numerous philanthropic endeavors, particularly in helping children in need through his involvement with City Year. As the co-chair of the City Year Philadelphia board, he helped to grow the nonprofit organization, which sends teams of young people to city schools to teach and mentor at-risk children.
In 2001, Banner received the leadership award from the renowned PARTNERS Program, a charitable organization whose goal is to enhance social and race relations in the Philadelphia area. In addition, he received the Lifetime of Idealism Award—City Year Greater Philadelphia—in 2009 and the Distinguished Community Leadership Award – Operation Understanding in 2006.
Born February 13, 1953, Banner is a graduate of Denison University in Granville, Ohio, and was a sports producer and reporter at WCAU Radio in Philadelphia upon graduation. Following his stint there, he opened a chain of clothing stores in Boston called “Designer’s Clothing.”
Banner and his wife, Helaine, have a daughter, Jill, and two sons, Jason and Jonathan.